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No. 7 Buckeyes sprint to 90-72 win over Asheville

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No. 7 Buckeyes sprint to 90-72 win over Asheville

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Grammy-winning singer and pianist Bruce Hornsby sent a tweet to Ohio State coach Thad Matta on Friday night.

In it, he asked for the seventh-ranked Buckeyes to take it easy on his son, UNC Asheville guard Keith Hornsby, when the teams met on Saturday.

The Buckeyes obliged - Hornsby lit up the Buckeyes for a career-best 26 points - but Ohio State still had the last laugh.

``That's just the way it is,'' Matta cracked, parroting the title of the older Hornsby's biggest hit.

Sam Thompson scored a career-high 18 points and Ohio State (8-1) relished the chance to get out and run in coasting to a 90-72 victory over the Bulldogs (3-7).

Deshaun Thomas had 17 points, Lenzelle Smith Jr. 16 and Evan Ravenel tied a career best with 12 points in the first half for the Buckeyes (8-1), who tuned up for a big showdown next Saturday against No. 9 Kansas in the fourth game in an eight-game homestand.

After playing a series of teams content to slow it down against a lean and fast team, the Buckeyes were like horses let out of a corral.

``We watched film a lot on them the past couple of days and we noticed that they didn't stop the ball particularly well,'' said Thompson, who electrified the crowd with a breakaway, windmill dunk after the game was long decided. ``We knew that if we could get stops, we knew we could push the ball up the floor and could get to the rim and create for ourselves and other people. We definitely tried to capitalize on that.''

They outscored the Bulldogs (3-7) 26-2 in fastbreak points and continually got behind them for easy baskets and rim-rattling dunks.

``The part I was most disappointed in from our standpoint is we didn't get back on defense all night long and we let them penetrate,'' Asheville coach Eddie Beidenbach said. ``We didn't get down and play defense like we can. I know Ohio State's really good, but they shouldn't have been able to do that.''

The Buckeyes scored on 14 of 19 possessions during one span in the first half and took a 50-35 lead at the break.

They would have been up even more if not for Hornsby, who had 18 points in the opening half while hitting all but one of his eight shots from the field - including 4 of 5 3-pointers.

Everyone at Ohio State was impressed with the shooting display he put on.

``Honestly, he's a good player,'' said Smith, who was victimized for several long-range buckets despite playing solid defense. ``He came in here rolling. You've got a guy like that with a hot hand, you don't contain him early in the game it's always going to be tougher.''

The Buckeyes had three in double figures as they hurried the ball down the floor and frequently scored in transition.

Hornsby had five early points as the Bulldogs trailed 11-7 in the opening few minutes. Then Thomas hit a 3, Smith slashed through the heart of the defense for a layup and Thompson dunked off a fast break pass from Shannon Scott to make it 18-8.

The lead remained near double figures until Ravenel muscled in a shot inside and then hit a 12-foot jumper to make it 40-27.

With the game still played at a fast pace, the Buckeyes pulled away in the early stages of the second half.

Thompson scored seven points as Ohio State ripped off 15 of the first 18 points in the opening minutes to widen the advantage to 65-38. The Bulldogs never pulled close again.

The loudest cheer of the day came with 6:44 left when Thompson took a long pass behind the defense and threw down a windmill dunk that brought the Ohio State bench to its feet.

``I just wanted to do something to get some energy in the gym, pick our guys up and pick the crowd up,'' said the high-flying wing, who some have called ``Slam'' Thompson.

Thanks to all of those layups, the Buckeyes shot 59 percent from the field (36 of 61).

Hornsby, with his father watching from behind the Asheville bench, hit 9 of 12 shots from the field including 6 of 8 3-pointers, made both of his free throws and added five rebounds and an assist. Will Weeks added 14 points and Jeremy Atkinson 11.

``I was able to get some shots to go down and had a lot of help from my teammates to help me get open,'' Hornsby said.

Hornsby's previous career high was 23 earlier this season against another top team, North Carolina State. The Bulldogs hung around in that big intrastate showdown before falling 82-80 on Nov. 23.

``Obviously we didn't do a good enough job of getting our guys to guard him because he's much more athletic than most people think,'' Matta said. ``As a sophomore to come in and do what he did, that was quite a performance.''

Despite Hornsby's big day, the Buckeyes were pleased with how things turned out. They know they'll have to run to score in a difficult Big Ten that includes several athletic teams.

``I really like this style and I think it fits well for this team,'' Smith said. ``We got a lot of open looks just by running and playing naturally. We have a lot of athletes on this team. Just getting out and going allows us to be at the top of our game.''

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Follow Rusty Miller on Twitter:http://www.twitter.com/rustymillerap

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Redskins vs. Eagles Week 15: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

Redskins vs. Eagles Week 15: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

When the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Washington Redskins in Week 1 on the 2019 NFL season, things were a lot different. 

Despite the loss, the Redskins had hopes of contending with veteran quarterback Case Keenum and some offensive talent, while the Eagles and a fully-healthy Carson Wentz were expected to be Super Bowl contenders. Fast forward to Week 15, and that hasn't been the case.

The Redskins struggles have come in bunches. A 3-10 record, Washington has dealt with injuries, off the field problems and the firing of Jay Gruden during the season. Things in Philadelphia haven't gone much better. At 6-7, Philadelphia is still fighting for a playoff spot, but an inconsistent offense has led to an underwhelming year for Wentz and company.

On Sunday, the Eagles will fight to keep their NFC East title hopes alive while the Redskins look to see more growth from rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The Week 15 matchup may not be what was expected earlier in the season, but it still has implications. Here's everything you need to know about the game.

REDSKINS vs EAGLES WEEK 15

Who: Washington Redskins (3-10) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (6-7)

What: Week 15 of the 2019 NFL regular season

When: Sunday, Dec. 5, 2019, 1 p.m. ET

Where: FedExField, Landover, MD.

TV Channel: FOX

Live Stream: Stream on FuboTV, Pregame and postgame coverage streaming on NBCSportsWashington.com

Radio: Redskins Radio Network

Spread: Eagles, -4.5

Over/Under: 38.5

Weather: 48 degrees, mostly cloudy

REDSKINS at PACKERS TV SCHEDULE:

8:30 a.m.: Pro Football Weekly

9:00 a.m.: Redskins Talk: Week 15

10:00 a.m.: Inside the Redskins

11:00 a.m.: Redskins Coaches Show

11:30 a.m.: Redskins Nation

12:00 p.m.: Redskins Kickoff Live

4:00 p.m.: Redskins Postgame Live 

REDSKINS 2019 SEASON SCHEDULE:

Week 1: Sunday, Sept. 8, Redskins at Eagles (L, 32-27)

Week 2: Sunday, Sept. 15, Cowboys at Redskins, (L, 31-21)

Week 3: Monday, Sept. 23, Bears at Redskins, (L, 31-15)

Week 4: Sunday, Sept. 29, Redskins at Giants, (L, 24-3)

Week 5: Sunday, Oct. 6, Patriots at Redskins, (L, 33-7)

Week 6: Sunday, Oct. 13, Redskins at Dolphins, (W, 17-16)

Week 7: Sunday, Oct. 20, 49ers at Redskins, 1 p.m. (L, 9-0)

Week 8: Thursday, Oct. 24, Redskins at Vikings, 8:20 p.m. (L, 19-9)

Week 9: Sunday, Nov. 3, Redskins at Bills, 1 p.m. (L, 24-9)

Week 10: BYE

Week 11: Sunday, Nov. 17, Jets at Redskins, 1 p.m. (L, 34-17)

Week 12: Sunday, Nov. 24, Lions at Redskins, 1 p.m. (W, 19-16)

Week 13: Sunday, Dec. 1, Redskins at Panthers, 1 p.m. (W, 29-21)

Week 14: Sunday, Dec. 8, Redskins at Packers, 1 p.m. (L, 20-15)

Week 15: Sunday, Dec. 15, Eagles at Redskins, 1 p.m.

Week 16: Sunday, Dec. 22, Giants at Redskins, 1 p.m.

Week 17: Sunday, Dec. 29, Redskins at Cowboys, 1 p.m.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

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Which team is closer to contention: the Wizards or Grizzlies?

Which team is closer to contention: the Wizards or Grizzlies?

While watching the Wizards take on another rebuilding team, as they did on Saturday night in their loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, it's only natural to compare the stages of those respective rebuilds and wonder which team is closer. That may be an even more interesting question with a game like Saturday's that matched the Wizards against a team doing things a decidedly different way.

In a sense, the Wizards are where the Grizzlies were last season. Memphis had unexpectedly bottomed out the year before, enough to land Jaren Jackson Jr. in the draft. And, like the Wizards this year, they were holding onto their core veterans, in their case Mike Conley Jr. and Marc Gasol.

But the Grizzlies didn't bounce back into playoff contention like they had hoped and ended up trading both Gasol and Conley, and arguably too late. The Wizards wish to avoid that fate with Bradley Beal and John Wall.

Neither the Wizards (7-17) or Grizzlies (9-17) are a good team right now and both would like to be back in the playoff mix sooner than later, maybe even next year. So, who is closer?

The Grizzlies have the more impressive young core with Jackson and Ja Morant. Both are just 20 years old and they each look like future All-Stars, if not All-NBA talents.

Jackson is averaging 17.6 points and 1.2 blocks while shooting 40 percent from three on six attempts per game. He's a two-way unicorn who can make plays like a guard and has potential to become an elite rim protector.

Morant is the early favorite for rookie of the year, averaging 18.7 points and 6.4 assists while shooting 42.6 percent from long range. He has future star written all over him with a game reminiscent of a young Wall or Russell Westbrook.

The Grizzlies appear to have hit on their high draft picks, but have also nailed later ones, the type of moves that separate the best front offices. Brandon Clarke, the 21st pick this past June, looks like a steal. And Dillon Brooks, a second round pick in 2017, is a solid young player.

But the Wizards also have an emerging young core with Thomas Bryant, Rui Hachimura and Moe Wagner. None of them are as good as Jackson or Morant, but they are good players on the rise. And, most importantly, the Wizards have Beal.

While Jackson and Morant could someday be stars, Beal already is one and he's signed long-term. Potential is a commodity in the NBA, but nothing is guaranteed for young teams and young players. Just look at the Bulls and Hawks this season.

Now, the Grizzlies do have something the Wizards would absolutely love to have and that is real financial flexibility. They have close to $70 million in salary coming off the books this summer and have the second-lowest payroll committed for next season of any team in the NBA, second only to Atlanta.

The Wizards, meanwhile, are strapped with Wall's supermax contract which, depending on how he returns from a torn Achilles, could be an albatross for years to come. Though cap space doesn't mean the Grizzlies will be able to lure free agents, as Memphis has never been mistaken for a prime destination, but it's a preferable spot to be in. Wall's deal may prevent the Wizards from keeping players they would otherwise re-sign, when Memphis should have no such problem.

So, so far we have the Grizzlies with a better young nucleus and a much better salary cap situation. The Wizards, though, have the proven star and may have two if Wall returns to form.

But here's what may give the Wizards the edge, or at least secure a push. The Grizzlies have to give one of their next two first round picks to Boston by way of a 2015 trade. It is top-6 protected this year and unprotected in 2021 if it doesn't convey this June. That could be a major problem for a team trying to build through the draft.

Also, the Wizards are lucky to be in the Eastern Conference. Though the Grizzlies geographically should be in the East, they remain in the West which has been the superior conference basically since Michael Jordan retired from the Bulls.

There is, of course, no definitive answer to the root question of this analysis. The easiest way to settle it would be to say the Grizzlies have a higher ceiling at this point because of Morant and Jackson, but the Wizards probably have the more likely path to the playoffs next season, given they play in the East and have two guys with a track record of getting there.

But as we compare the teams, keep in mind what Memphis wanted to do and what they ended up doing in terms of trading their veteran stars. The Wizards don't want to take their rebuild that far, but sometimes things don't go according to plan. Just ask the Grizzlies.

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